Wind Energy – SB 286 Became Law
Senate President Designee Mike McGuire’s groundbreaking legislation to expedite offshore wind development to help meet the Golden State’s long-term electricity demand and nation-leading climate goals has been signed into law by Governor Newsom from California.
SB 286 was signed by Governor Newsom today and will become law January 1, 2024.
“Today’s action by Governor Newsom ensures California will move with speed and precision to deploy offshore wind. The signing of SB 286 shows the Golden State is serious about bringing on desperately needed new renewable power generation and meeting the state’s nation-leading climate goals and energy needs. This bill will expedite the state-side offshore wind permitting process eliminating a staggering 5 years off of the permitting timeline all while protecting California’s coastal environment and storied fishing fleet. The quicker we get offshore wind infrastructure built off the Golden State’s Coast, the faster we’ll get family sustaining jobs propped up and moving,” McGuire said.
SB 286 – the Offshore Wind Expediting Act – will accelerate the offshore wind permitting process through the State Coastal Commission and State Lands Commission. At the same time, it will ensure environmental safeguards will remain in place, California’s storied fishing fleet interests are protected, and will advance resources that benefit communities and develop family-sustaining jobs through career training programs.
In addition to desperately needed streamlining, for the first time, SB 286 mandates state agencies and key stakeholders come together to collaborate and develop the long-term game plan to deploy offshore wind infrastructure off of the California coast.
SB 286 requires the Coastal Commission to bring the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, the State Lands Commission, the Ocean Protection Council, representatives from the commercial fishing industry, representatives from the offshore wind industry, federal agencies, labor, Native American tribes and other community leaders together over the next two years.
This working group will create a statewide standard to ensure offshore wind development is expedited and will develop data-driven strategies to avoid and minimize impacts to ocean fisheries and to the maximum extent possible, mitigate for unavoidable impacts.